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Reducing PC energy consumption can save electricity costs and reduce environmental impact. Small enterprises running a fleet of Windows XP desktop PCs and laptops can reduce power consumption costs by half by switching to Windows Vista. In this research note, we describe the results of lab tests performed by Info-Tech Research Group that compare power consumption for Windows XP versus Windows Vista.

Main points of discussion include:

  • XP and Vista power consumption under high and low power states.
  • The effect of Aero on Vista overall power consumption.
  • Sleep mode improvements in Windows Vista.
  • Group Policy differences between Windows XP and Windows Vista.
  • Sample power running costs under Windows XP and Windows Vista.
  • How power consumption translates into carbon dioxide emission reductions.

This note does not include discussion around conducting a total cost of ownership analysis of the upgrade to Vista. This note focuses on one aspect of the upgrade, which is the change in power consumption of the OS.

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